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The Tar Heel Thursday, May 26, 198813
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Tar HeelDavid Minton
The late afternoon sun provides spectators with intriguing
designs on the steps of Manning Hall.
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University Square Chapel Hill 967-8935
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THE AMERICAN HEART
WERE FIGHTING FOR
This space provided as a public service.
Actor Rod Steiger enjoys role
in latest 'Desperado' Western
From Associated Press reports
LOS ANGELES Academy
Award-winner Rod Steiger says it
was his character's "Lolita'Mike
relationship with a young girl that
attracted him to the latest "Desper
. ado" movie.
Steiger plays Silas Slaten, a mine
owner who offers to free roving
cowboy Duell McCall from jail and
a trumped-up murder charge if
McCall will lead the search party to
find Slaten's abducted "daughter."
McCall, played by Alex Mc Arthur,
is the "Desperado" in this third movie
in the series. Author Elmore Leonard
wrote the first movie about a young
cowboy who's a fugitive from a phony
charge. The latest film, "Desperado:
Avalanche at Devil's Ridge," aired
recently on NBC.
"My character has an obsession
with this girl," said Steiger. .
"That's what interested me the
most, this relationship with the girl.
It made me think of 'Lolita.' Every
body thinks the girl's my daughter,
but she's not."
Slaten is the heavy of the film, but
Steiger said he doesn't play him that
"I just think of him as a character
to play," he said. "Let the audience
be the judge. I think the mistake a
lot of actors make when they play
a heavy is to go through the boards.
"Every human being has something
he wants. If the something I want
makes me a criminal, then I become
the heavy. I wonder how many times
IVe been killed in films. I know it's
at least 60 times. In early live
television I was killed every week, it
Steiger, who won an Oscar as best
actor in 1967 for "In the Heat of the
Night," has been in only a few
Westerns, although he professes a
love for the genre. He starred in "A
Fistful of Dynamite," "Jubal" and
"Cattle Annie and Little Britches." He
also starred in the 1955 movie version
of the musical "Oklahoma" playing
Jud Fry, the bad guy in conflict with
cowhand Curly, played by Gordon
He acted both on Broadway and
in the "golden age" of live television
drama. He was "Marty" on television,
the drama that as a movie brought
an Oscar to Ernest Borgnine.
"I thought I was going to do the
movie," Steiger said, "but they
wanted me to sign a seven-year
contract. I said no. Two days later
I got the part of Jud in 'Oklahoma.'
I'd tested for the role of Curly with
an unknown actor named Paul
Newman. Then I tested in the after
noon with James Dean for Jud."
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